Skills gained outside the workforce

You can pick up skills from many places - not just from jobs you may have had. This page helps you think about the skills you've gained outside the workforce.

Skills that you develop in your day-to-day life are often transferable skills - that is, skills that are useful to many types of jobs. Below are some examples. 

Household activities

Activities that may help you develop skills include:

  • evaluating and purchasing food, furniture and appliances
  • household maintenance, or repairing and maintaining cars
  • managing the household budget and general bookkeeping
  • planning and organising parties, holidays, entertainment and children's activities.

Skills you may develop include:

  • evaluation, analysis and problem-solving skills
  • skill in doing precise, detailed and accurate work
  • book-keeping, budgeting and maths skills
  • skill in organising and co-ordinating activities and other people.

Voluntary or community work

You may do things such as:

  • work as an elected officer of an organisation, where you might chair meetings, organise speakers or events, do fundraising, keep books, write reports or make submissions on reports
  • teach or counsel children or adults
  • provide physical and/or emotional support for groups of people with disabilities or special needs.

Skills you may develop include:

  • planning and organisational skills
  • writing skills, including report writing
  • problem solving
  • people and communication skills
  • bookkeeping, budgeting and maths skills.

Recreation and hobbies

  • Participating in and organising sporting activities.
  • Using creativity to produce floral art, fine arts, music, drama.
  • Participating in clubs and organisations: environmental, religious, service, youth, etc.

Skills you may develop include:

  • planning and organisational skills
  • problem solving
  • people skills
  • skill in doing precise, detailed and accurate work.

Educational activities

  • Doing part-time study or night classes, and hobby or craft courses.
  • Taking tertiary education courses.
  • Learning informally, via study groups, home reading, book clubs, writing groups etc.

Skills you may develop include:

  • planning and organisational skills
  • writing skills, including report writing
  • problem solving
  • communication skills.

Updated 4 Nov 2016